Americans reveal the most hated insect in the United States

·3-min read

Cockroaches are officially the most hated insect, according to a new study.

A new survey of 2,000 people found 39% can't stand cockroaches, followed by spiders (37%) and ants (29%) more than any other type of bug.

Respondents hate these bugs so much, 69% said they can't sleep if they know there's an insect in their home, and an average of 36 hours of snooze time is lost annually because of this fear, according to the findings.

For those who struggle with a fear of bugs, (64%) believe they only exist to cause itchiness and pain, and don't contribute any good into the world.

Three in five have even gone as far as saying they'd want to burn their home down if they came across a bug.

The study, commissioned by Zevo and conducted by OnePoll, revealed what respondents would do to not deal with bugs ever again. In fact, bugs can be such a nuisance, 66% said they'd give up a month's worth of pay to avoid bugs, while 61% would give up their favorite food for a year.

Respondents shared they would pay an average $1,974 to never see bugs in their home again, while others said they would pay an average $2,241 to never come across a bug again anywhere in the world ever. 

American workers have also had their fair share with bugs. Ninety-one percent of those in the food and beverage industry said insects interrupt their thought process at work.

Meanwhile, nearly half of carpenters and construction workers (48%) see bugs as a threat to their families, pets and themselves, and 78% of education workers shudder just at the thought of dealing with bugs.

"The common reaction to finding bugs in the home is that we want to get rid of them, immediately," said Daniel Perry, Chief Entomologist, at Zevo. "Insects push our anxiety, fear and disgust buttons. They are resilient and smart -- having millions of years to adapt to predators and, more recently, us. They have evolved to inhabit our living spaces. Many are harmless but others are dangerous and carry diseases. Bugs that we find outdoors in nature are one thing, but once they enter the home and invade our personal safe havens, it's a totally different feeling."

Close to three-quarters of Americans (71%) admit they don't take bugs seriously until they pose a threat to the home.

For example, the average household said they wouldn't recognize they have a fly problem until they're five flies deep.

More than seven in 10 (72%) will reconsider buying a home or choosing an apartment if they know about a bug problem. But if they do come across a bug infestation at home, 74% will take immediate action to avoid future issues.

Forty percent of respondents said they reach for the nearest shoe, magazine or item to hunt down the bug. Meanwhile, 27% said they try to capture and release the bug into the wild and 22% will simply scream .

"It's always good to remember that when you see one insect, there are likely more following closely behind," said Daniel Perry, Chief Entomologist. "It's important to stop small bug problems from becoming big bug problems as soon as possible. Monitor the area, seal up cracks and holes, keep the kitchen and trash areas tidy, dry up damp areas, clean and sweep regularly, and reach for an effective insect control product that blasts bugs without harsh chemicals."

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